mma / News

Former WEC Fighter Will Ribeiro Looks to Focus on Teaching and Fighting For Peace Events

February 20, 2013 | Posted by Larry Csonka

– Back in 2008, former WEC fighter Will Ribeiro was in a devastating motorcycle accident. Today, he works hard on physical therapy sessions to improve his mobility despite hemiplegia (paralysis of one half of the body) and frequent seizures. Here is an update on him…

On Having Issues With Seizures: “I still depend on my anti-seizure medication, and I always worry about running out,” he said. “Despite never missing my medication, I still have at least one episode every month. My doctor informed me that I should expect to have seizures for the rest of my life due to the severity of my cranial injuries. I can take a few steps at a time with a cane. But I am not able walk any sort of distance. I am not able to walk outdoors. I am not able to descend a staircase. The paralysis of the left side of my body is very disruptive. To walk I actually take a step with my good leg, and then swing my paralyzed leg forward.”

On Finances Holding Back Treatment: “I believe there might be a treatment that will allow commands from my brain to control the left side of my body again, but I don’t believe it’s something I could afford,” he said. “Hopefully one day.”

His Brother on What Ribeiro Used to do Before His Accident: “Here in Rio de Janeiro, the government has established police pacification units in various slums (favelas), now known as ‘communities,’ and successfully removed the dominating presence of drug-trafficking gangs. In the communities of Andarai and Fogueteiro, for example, the ‘Red Command’ criminal faction used to be in charge. In the Macaco community, the ‘Third Command’ ran things. Before Will Ribeiro’s accident in 2008, he taught martial arts in Macaco for two years and was one of the few people to cross the bridge between those rival neighborhoods. Our Fighting for Peace project aims to clearly show that athletes from three formerly rival communities (Andarai, Macaco and Fogueteiro) can compete without conflict or fear of any sort. These young athletes may not receive any exposure otherwise.”



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Larry Csonka
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